Visit Jeremy's Blog.
Go Back > Linux Answers > Applications / GUI / Multimedia
User Name


By okos at 2009-06-19 21:24
I send quite a few faxes to clients. As a linux noob, I had quite a bit of trouble setting up a working fax. I spent hours setting it up resulting in quite a bit of frustration. Well, I figured it out! I thought I would help others who are in the same boat.

Now I will explain what I learned:

Programs you need:
modem drivers
eFax-gtk eFax with a decent GUI.

1. You will need to find out what kind of modem you have. There are a few ways to do that. Look at the paperwork you received when you bought the computer. There should be a list of hardware, provided you did not throw it away. In command line, depending on your hardware setup, the following commands should help, lspci,lshw lsusb, dmesg.

Once you know what hardware you have you will need the linux drivers for it. Now I can only speak for myself in this area. I have a Dell 5150 laptop with a Conxant modem. Well for the longest time you would have to pay $20.00 for the driver from linuxant. Lucky for me, Dell now sells computers with Ubuntu. Since Dell obviously provides drivers for its hardware, you can now download the driver for free of charge! Yippie! I do not know if the free drivers will work on a non dell system, but you could give it a try. The links are at the bottom of this page.
Anyways, download and install the drivers for your computer.
Next you will need to find out the device name. You should be able to find that out when installing the driver. It will start with /dev/tty.... Mine is ttySHSF0. This is most important. Without it, your fax will never get sent.
Once the driver is installed, in my case, I had to change group ownership ttySHSF0 so that it is usable for users. Open a console (command line)

chown root:users /dev/ttySHSF0

2. Download and install eFax-gtk, openoffice. Cups should already be installed on your system. See links below.

3. Configuring cups.
Cups the printer program will need to be configured to send the document from open office to the efax-gtk.
While in root mode, open firefox or what ever web browser you use. In the address box type the following which will allow you to setup cups.


In cups do the following: Select Administration > Add Printer.
Type in a name "eFax-gtk " for example.
Location and Description are optional.
Under DEVICE, select: AppSocket/HP JetDirect
Under DEVICE URI, type in, "socket://localhost:9900" (no quotes)
Under MAKE select, Raw
Under MODLE select Raw Queue (en)
Add Printer. Cups is finished. Don't worry about the error after adding printer, there are no printer options.

4. Setup eFax-gtk.
As a user (not root) open a console and type:


Select File> Settings
Type in your name and # you want to show on the top of the fax that you sent. The phone number should not have any dashes. It should looks something like this or you will get an error 201 555 1212.

Modem tab:
This is where you must know what is your device.
Mine is ttySHSF0.
So under Serial Device I type ttySHSF0 or /dev/ttySHSF0
Lock: /var/lock
Under CAPABILITIES: I just leave blank.
If you have problems sending a fax under MODEM CLASS it is best to select either AUTO or Class 1. If unsure select Class 1.

Params tab:
You can leave it as default.If you want to hear the fax being sent you can change Initialization params to Z &FE&D2S7=120 &C0 M1L2 S11=55.

The other params I left as default.

Print and View tab:
I left as default and don't use my computer to receive faxes. I have a separate fax machine for that. I only send the fax to 1. Save paper 2. To expedite things. If someone wants to add to this section, that would be great.

Socket tab:
Select run socket server.
Select port 9900 (since that is how it is configured in cups)
Select local host.

Logging tab:
You may want to add it to either /home/~/fax.logs.
Or you can put it with the other logs in /var/log
You can also use the logrotate option on delete the fax log on a regular intervals. (That is a whole different subject)

Select OK to save settings.

Now in the main efax-gtk screen:
Under fax entry method, select socket instead of file.

5. Test efax-gtk:
This is really simple.
A. In efax-gtk (main screen)select the STANDBY.
You should get a message similar to this:
efax-0.9a: 14:17:30 opened /dev/ttySHSF0
efax-0.9a: 14:17:31 using hsfmodem- in class 1
efax-0.9a: 14:17:31 waiting for activity
That shows efax-gtk is able to connect to the driver at device /dev/ttySHSF0.

B. Put a fax in queue:
Open open office.
Type a letter.
Select file>print>efax-gtk. Select OK.
If efax is currently running, a screen should pop up asking for a telephone number to dial to send the fax.
(This confirms that cups and efax-gtk socket is setup properly)

C. Type in a phone number and send the fax. You should be able to hear the fax go through. Call the recipient to see if the fax went through.
(This confirms efax, the device /dev/tty...settings and the modem driver is setup properly)

I hope this tutorial will provide you with some success.


List hardware (lshw)

Dell drivers for Conexant modems.


Open office

Linux questions. Subject,getting sound with eFax-gtk:


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:38 PM.

Main Menu
Write for LQ is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration